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Old 10th Jul 2008, 23:01   #1 (permalink)
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Join Date: May 2001
Location: London, UK
Posts: 74
EGNOS/WAAS - Quick Questions for those that may know

Can't find the answers on the internet, least of all on the ESA website!:

Is EGNOS operational full time yet?
If so is it still being transmitted as a TEST signal?
If so how would I know if my WAAS enabled GPS is using the augmented signal or not?
Do specific GPS units disregard the TEST signal, and others not?
Is there a proper go-live date?

Anyone up to speed on these things? Has anyone bothered to upgrade a legacy 430 to a 430W in Europe yet?
Vedeneyev is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11th Jul 2008, 01:40   #2 (permalink)
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: London
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ESA - Navigation - The present - EGNOS
421C is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11th Jul 2008, 09:39   #3 (permalink)
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Hants, UK
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EGNOS isn't operational yet - best guesses are 2009+

Yes, its broadcasting a test signal over 2 Inmarsat satellites and the ESA Artemis satellite.

Your WAAS enabled GPS will ignore the test transmissions.

You can get software mods to consumer units to use the test signals, but you really don't want to be using it in flight.

Rgds, NM.
NavMonkey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11th Jul 2008, 10:45   #4 (permalink)
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Fareham
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EGNOS is currently broadcasting from two (out of a planned three) satellites. You can view the current status (quasi real-time) here: EGNOS Real Time Performance

The status is 'Operational' but not currently certified for 'safety of life systems'. I do not know the precise set up of IFR approved GPS receivers, but I would expect (hope for) them to ignore these signals.

Non IFR approved sets may well be picking up and using the EGNOS signal. My Garmin GPS 96c aviation unit certainly does as do a number of different units we use in my business. On a Garmin unit you can tell if it is receiving the Differential signal by checking the 'Satellite Status' page. Signals with overlaid EGNOS/WAAS have a small 'D' displayed in the signal strength histogram.
Nipper2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11th Jul 2008, 12:31   #5 (permalink)
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: London
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I'm no GPS expert but have a non aviation handheld GPS 'tracker' unit. This does on occasions pick up the EGNOS satellite (which is think is channel 33) and then reports its accuracy being as good as 5 feet on occasions.
It is intermittent, doesn't always do it but when it does, it displays a D on the status screen .(Presumeably this means differential GPS).

This has been happening for about 2 years I think from memory.

just for fyi
spikeair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th Jul 2008, 19:01   #6 (permalink)
Join Date: Apr 2004
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My Garmin 496 will occasionally say that its using EGNOS, and I've seen some pretty impressive claims of accuracy when in that mode.

However its pretty sporadic - maybe 5-10% of the time that I can get an EGNOS lock (for want of a better expression).

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